Monday, June 30, 2008


"Africa's AIDS epidemic is so severe that it should be classed as a disaster comparable to floods or famine, the Red Cross said Thursday. In its annual "World Disasters Report", the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) said that there was "no doubt" that HIV/AIDS matches the UN definition of a disaster. About two thirds of the world's HIV-positive cases are in sub-Saharan Africa. At least one person in 10 is living with HIV in nations such as South Africa, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland and Zambia, the report said. The UN's Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs classes a disaster as a "serious disruption of the functioning of a society, causing widespread human, material or environmental losses which exceed the ability of a society to cope using only its own resources". The Red Cross said such a crisis now exists in Africa."
(Yahoo News, 26 June) RD

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